How often do you question your existence or the existence of others? Can we ever feel completely certain of the external world (or even our own inner world)? The following visual art series, “Disintegral,” focuses on the alienating effects of dissociative disorders, in which the sufferer feels fragmented, solipsistic, and unreal. “Disintegral” focuses on this fragmentary feeling through a series of pen and ink drawings.
“The Ones Who are Left Behind: An Armenian Story” details the close relationship the author had with her great aunt (who witnessed the murder of her family), the author’s search for identity, and a reckoning with a brutal collective past. The essay explores how trauma can travel through generations as the author self-reflects on her struggle to harness her emotions to get better, not bitter. Nestled within this personal essay, there is a universal message of hope and healing from suffering and loss.
How do we heal from trauma? Can we truly learn from traumatic events or are we doomed to repeat the same mistakes, mindlessly, until death? To deal with trauma, what defenses do we put up, and how do we keep those defenses from blocking our growth?
It has been known victims of extreme physical, emotional, or sexual abuse grow up to take on the role of abuser — can this psychological cycle be applied to the United States’ turmoil? Both US political parties have become increasingly polarized, to the point at which there is no bridging the gap. How are we to stop this cycle of chaos if communication is off-limits?
The most defining feature of the human condition is our ability to be resilient, especially in the face of extreme challenge. This makes us human.